With the exciting news that North Grenville will host this year’s famous International Plowing Match & Rural Expo, it should come as no surprise that the organizers are in great need of volunteers. This year’s plowing match will take place from September 20-24. It is a large scale event which will take place on approximately 200 acres of land over a period of five days. This is why a staggering number of volunteers – approximately 1,200 – are needed to make the event a success.
Currently, the event organizers have recruited about 500 of the needed volunteers, and are hoping to hear from more people who are willing to help. Volunteers do not need to live in North Grenville to participate. Cathy Sheppard, who is the co-chair of the IPM’s Volunteer Committee, along with North Grenville Councillor Dorren O’Sullivan, is appealing to people from all walks of life for help.
“There are many areas that still require assistance, and the use of your time may not be applied until several weeks before the event,” said Cathy. “We will need many boots on the ground. There is a need for every skill set and helping hand available. We are sure the event will be incredibly memorable, and what better way to remember, than to be a part of it!”
Volunteer shifts would vary greatly, but most will be a half-day per shift. There will also be on-call shifts, and floaters to help wherever needed. The Volunteer Committee is seeking both workers and leaders in all skill sets, with examples including security, first aid, event planning, parades, antiques, education, servers, water, landscaping, and much more. Those who volunteer for a half day get free access to the event for the other half of the day, but as Cathy Sheppard puts it, “The memory will be the biggest reward!”
The International Plowing Match & Rural Expo is a North American annual celebration of agriculture and rural living. The five day event includes not just plowing competitions, but also learning opportunities, vendors, live entertainment, food, and activities for people of all ages. It carries the distinction of being the largest event of its kind in North America. Perhaps one of the greatest reasons to become a volunteer is the fact that profits generated from the IPM each year are donated to the host community, meaning that North Grenville stands to financially benefit if enough volunteers lend their time to make the event a success.
Those interested in learning more about being an IPM volunteer, or signing up to volunteer, can do so at www.plowingmatch.org/ipm2022/get-involved/become-a-volunteer. Alternatively, the volunteer committee can be reached at [email protected].